Each year the experts lose more confidence in the Philadelphia Eagles’ future.
As the COVID-19 pandemic forces everyone to re-evaluate everything from health, traveling, and personal decisions, everyone’s looking for something to keep us all positive. Fortunately, we may have found it in the form of sports. MLB, NBA, and the NFL are all looking at kickstarting some real game action, and if you’re a fan of the Philadelphia Eagles, that should be music to your ears. The only question is what will that look like?
We’ve tossed around the idea that there may not be any fans in attendance. We’ve all discussed that there will be financial ramifications for not just the 32 individual teams but for the NFL as a whole. The salary cap will almost certainly be reduced to a smaller number in 2021, but hold on a second! Aren’t the Eagles already one of the teams that have one of the worst cap situations in 2021 already? How on Earth is vice president and general manager Howie Roseman going to fix this one?
Surely, you have to believe that there’s a chance that his magic may run out on this one. All of a sudden that Super Bowl victory feels like it was ten years ago, and there are quite a few fans and NFL insiders who are looking at this Eagles team like they’re trending in the wrong direction.
Just take “The Worldwide Leader in Sports” for instance. Each year, ESPN does power rankings for the league based on one very unusual factor when it comes to these rankings, their outlook on how well each team is set up for the next three seasons. You’ll need an ESPN Plus subscription to read all of these, but in 2018, the Eagles were ranked first. For the 2019 version, Philly slipped to third place.
Fast forward to the present, and in the most recent version, the downward spiral continues. The “Birds” are ranked sixth. By definition, that’s what one might call trending in the wrong direction.
Could that be a result of bad draft picks, bad contracts, or taking a project quarterback after paying your franchise signal-caller the most guaranteed money in the history of Earth at the time? Could it be that salary cap issue for 2021 or all of the above?
Here’s the explanation from the experts if you need it. Seth Walder, Field Yates, Jeremy Fowler, and Louis Riddick were all asked to weigh in. Here are the theories from Riddick and Fowler, beginning with the former, Mr. Riddick.
"The Eagles have upgraded the speed and skill level exceptionally well at the wide receiver position as compared to what they finished the season with last year. The question is whether they can now make it all work, on the field, where Wentz is as skilled a thrower as there is in the league. Chemistry is a big part of the game of football. They need to make it happen in Philly."
Here’s what Mr. Fowler had to say.
"Jason Kelce is done after this year, Jason Peters is now a 38-year-old guard and Brandon Brooks is coming off an Achilles tendon tear. The interior offensive line needs reinforcements. And so does the linebacker spot. The Eagles have addressed the front and back ends of the defense, and a high-pedigree sideline-to-sideline player would complete the mission."
Whether you agree with any of that, all of that, or none of it, you have to admit. The guys have a point. If you’re an Eagles fan, you have to hope that this team is headed in the right direction and the 2017-2018 season wasn’t simply the finest hour for a team that caught lightning in a bottle. We’ll have to wait and see what transpires. Fortunately, we all can hang our hat on three things.
Carson Wentz is, indeed, a franchise quarterback. Good old Howie isn’t perfect, but he’s one of the game’s better general managers, and Doug Pederson might be capable of leading a few college rosters to an 8-8 record versus NFL competition. Yes, the man is that good.